[OSM-talk] Thoughts on OSM design, and looking forward and back

Jean-Guilhem Cailton jgc at arkemie.com
Wed Feb 24 19:16:44 GMT 2010

Thanks a lot Steve, for underlining the need to improve the experience 
of new visitors.

This is right on spot with what we have been feeling regarding Haiti. 
Now that OSM is indeed the best map in Haiti, there is a kind of special 
responsibility that comes with this: let potential users know about OSM, 
and actually use it, and then maybe for some of them help improve it.

(Just as an example (I don't mean that these specific points are 
especially important), there was a few days ago a little discussion 
about some Haiti thematic maps 
and their coupling with OpenStreetBugs. See e.g.:
http://lists.openstreetmap.org/pipermail/talk-ht/2010-February/000244.html )

I am thinking of two concrete ways we could contribute to this effort:
- Localization. For instance, help adapting OpenStreetBugs and 
translating it in Haitian Creole, and maybe also the front page and a 
few others.
(How do we do this ? For OSB, I see 
http://github.com/emka/openstreetbugs/tree/master/locale/. Is it enough 
to supply an osb.ht.json file ?)

- Get feedback from potential new users. Maybe, without going as far as 
a formal study like the one you quoted for Wikipedia 
(http://usability.wikimedia.org/wiki/UX_and_Usability_Study ), by 
organizing one or several hand-on sessions with a few potential 
users/contributors, possibly with a video recording of their reactions, 
questions, etc...
Do you think this would be useful ?


Toulouse, France

P.S.: also, thanks a lot for your article "OpenStreetMap - The Best Map" 
(http://opengeodata.org/openstreetmap-the-best-map). I really enjoyed 
reading it, and I think it makes a lot of sense.

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